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14 things that need a letter grading system more than cabs

By
Will Gleason
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Pretty soon, delinquent taxi drivers may have to get as creative as underperforming restaurants when it comes to dealing with public (and potentially embarrassing) letter grades. Get ready to see a lot of signs advertising Brakes! and Brisk Service!

City Councilman Carlos Menchaca is reportedly finalizing details on a bill that would assign letter grades to taxi drivers the same way the city currently evaluates bars and restaurants. That means a giant paper C could one day make you think twice about getting in a cab the same way it currently makes you (almost) reconsider that spontaneous brunch spot.

“It’s a great thing,” said Noah Budnick, a spokesperson for the advocacy group Transportation Alternatives. “Accountability is essential to saving lives. It’s a very strong accountability proposal.”

But let’s be honest, if you were really in a rush to get somewhere, would you actually decide not to get in a cab if it had a below-A rating? In fact, we can think of quite a few aspects of New York life that could use a letter grading system much more than cabs:

  • Stores based on level of rudeness: F for "Fucking rude!" and A for "Absolutely delightful!"
  • Elevators, especially at subway stations: It would be nice to know before you get in if you're going to be required to hold your breath for four minutes to get down one level.
  • Leg room in Broadway theaters
  • Dog walkers (F if they lose the dog.)
  • Street-meat vendors
  • Ice cream trucks, even though it would be a major buzzkill 
  • CMJ Showcases, though they might have to grade on a curve
  • Waterways (Looking at you, Gowanus)
  • Bodegas: based solely on their quality of late-night snacks
  • Cops
  • "Delivery" "Services" (you know what we mean...)
  • Bus routes: Why do some come all the time and some never come at all? The eternal mystery.
  • Landlords
  • Subway performers. F for the platform hogs, A for the future stars. 

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